All About Estates

Category: Probate Tax

Total 24 Posts

The Mysteries of Probate, Revealed

Of all the questions I am asked about the administration of estates, the ones that come up the most frequently are: “what is probate?”; “how do I know if I need probate?”; and “what’s involved in applying for probate?” Herein – the answers.

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Valuing Estate Assets – A Hierarchy of Evidence

Acting as an estate trustee can be a difficult job. It is often made more difficult when you have to work with a sibling. While the types of disputes co-estate trustees can have with one another are seemingly infinite, one common fight is over valuing an estate asset. Valuing estate…

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Multiple Wills Across Civil and Common-Law Systems; Estate Planning That Provides An Advantage To Clients Who Hold Assets In Ontario And Quebec

If structuring an estate plan across different Canadian jurisdictions didn’t raise enough considerations for an estate planner, add a different legal system to the mix, namely, Quebec’s civil law.  This post focuses on the estate-planning advantages available to clients who hold assets both in Ontario and Quebec, specifically the advantage…

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A Presumptive Peril: The Law of Beneficiary Designations is Now in Flux

Calmusky v. Calmusky, 2020 ONSC 1506, is a 2020 decision of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice that is ruffling some feathers among banks, financial advisors and estate planning lawyers in Ontario. In this case, the court applied the principles surrounding the presumption of resulting trust, established by the Supreme Court…

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What is it you guys do anyway?

Today’s blog is being brought to you by guest blogger, Betty Laidlaw, a law clerk in the Private Client Services group of Fasken LLP. When someone asks me what I do for a living and I answer, “I’m a law clerk”, I often get blank stares.  When I say “paralegal”,…

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Transferring Wealth During Your Lifetime

I was reading recently that approximately $30-trillion in assets will be shifting from one generation to the next across North America in the next few decades, according to consulting firm Accenture. A couple of years ago, I wrote about gifting cash or assets during one’s lifetime as an alternative method…

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Resulting Trusts and Summary Judgment Motions

With its sandy beaches, hiking trails, canoe routes, and wildlife, the Town of Wasaga Beach is a well-loved Ontario vacation destination. However, no town, however idyllic, is immune to lengthy property disputes, especially when the two people fighting are related to each other. Brother A and Brother B were at…

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Life Insurance and Contingent Ownership

Ownership of assets into ‘joint tenancy with right of survivorship” is a mechanism of ownership transfer commonly used for estate planning to address such issues as probate fee and tax avoidance. Recently, this blog site very capably addressed the issues surrounding “joint tenancy” of life insurance in particular (“Life Insurance…

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A Gift is a Gift

We often write about the benefits (and some pitfalls) of gifting, before and after death. Personally, when I recommend gifting, I assume that unless there are specific outcomes required to realize on the gift, a gift is exactly that, a gift – something transferred voluntarily without expectation of getting it…

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Joint accounts – the good and the bad

Earlier this year, my father-in- law left us suddenly.  While my in-laws were careful about planning for this day there was still some Estate Administration Tax (EAT) to be paid on the transfer of assets between spouses.  Armed with that experience, my mother-in-law is determined pay the least amount of…

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